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Guest Message by DevFuse

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The Newsroom: "News Night 2.0" OAD 7/1/12 ***SPOILERS***


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48 replies to this topic

#26 OFFLINE   gaperrine

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Posted 25 July 2012 - 07:19 PM

You can judge the integrity of any current news show by who they've blacklisted: who they DON'T allow on under any circumstances. You'd be amazed how long those lists are. And how many highly-respected PHDs, best-selling authors, prize-winning economists, leading scientists and brilliant social commentators are never allowed to air their perspectives on what is supposed to be the PUBLIC airwaves! All because they might rock the boat before the next CIALIS commercial.


I would love to see those lists. Could you post a link?

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#27 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 25 July 2012 - 07:22 PM

Let's stick with discussing the show on HBO and not drift into further political discussions.
(In other words ... we're not going there.)

Thanks!

#28 OFFLINE   balboadave

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Posted 25 July 2012 - 09:36 PM

Exactly. I want a show unafraid to nail the Koch Bros., Rupert Murdoch, the NRA, Obama, a religion, or even the Supreme Court if they're up to no good. I don't want happy-talk news, I want real news calling it like it is.


That's exactly what the show Countdown with Keith Olbermann did. Well, except he wasn't afraid to inject a fair amount of humor.

#29 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 01:43 AM

This is exactly the point "The Newsroom" makes with Jane Fonda threatening the anchor: Lay off billionaire X or you'll find yourself in a manufactured personal scandal which will allow the net to break your contract without penalty.

Olbermann, like Will McAvoy, showed proper outrage over wars for profit, Katrina and American torture. Will McAvoy is under threat for his proper response to outrageous circumstances, Olbermann is out of a job.

Thus "The Newsroom" is dealing fairly with the core issues of journalism, or what passes for it, today. Can you still report the real news on a major network and like Murrow did, like Mike Wallace did, like Tim Russert did, and like those guys, deliver it with real emotion that brings home the truth to the public like a sledgehammer?

That's called integrity, and networks banned that at the same time they brought their news divisions under the "Entertainment" banner.

#30 ONLINE   Nick

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 07:00 AM

You're confusing saying the news with opinionated editorializing.

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#31 OFFLINE   RasputinAXP

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 07:50 AM

What perplexes me is how my parents can hate The Newsroom, but love Veep!!! How is that even possible???


We love both in this house.

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#32 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 01:07 PM

You're confusing saying the news with opinionated editorializing.

This is what "The Newsroom" is all about: reminding folks that there used to be these guys on TV called "journalists" or "Newsmen". They came on TV and exposed frauds like McCarthy or dangers like DDT or Vietnam. They didn't have opinions, they just told the truth and people got the message loud and clear.

Today under the entertainment banner, network news has intentionally created a new semantical framework where EVERYTHING is opinion and there is no objective truth. Thus they sell commercial time by pitting everyone against each other like some demented wrestling match.

If anyone tells the truth about anything, the network immediately books opposition to it and sets up another shouting match so the public has no idea what's true and what isn't, so they buy more Cialis to cope with the resultant stress.

"The Newsroom" reminds us, hey, there are real facts. Actual, incontrovertible truths out there. And when this guy McAvoy tells them to you, you can believe him, and be properly outraged. We don't always need to jump to the opposition moron spewing some talking points baloney.

The anchor just told you the news. It was not his "opinion". Deal with it. Just like back in the day. Integrity. The lost art.

But there's an additional bonus to the nets for keeping everything on the "opinion" level. It allows them to prevent the emergence of any actual truth teller. These are giant corporations with global interests and a great deal of money at stake in many markets. Truth rocks boats, and rocking boats affect the bottom line. So this "scandal" that McAvoy is being threatened with is not some fictional metaphor. Scandal hammers fall on whistleblowers and truthtellers all the time. See: Julian Assange and Eliot Spitzer.

Speak truth to power and get your teeth knocked out in short order. "The Newsroom" masquerades as a romcom, but it's actually a hero's tale.

Edited by Maruuk, 26 July 2012 - 02:00 PM.


#33 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 04:03 PM

"The Newsroom" reminds us, hey, there are real facts. Actual, incontrovertible truths out there. And when this guy McAvoy tells them to you, you can believe him, and be properly outraged. We don't always need to jump to the opposition moron spewing some talking points baloney.

They are only facts if one believes them to be true. Otherwise they are opinion or propaganda.

I agree that there is a tendency toward the "dualing talking heads" format where a "neutral" host/anchor brings on diametrically opposed people to yell at each other. Sometimes it expands into teams of diametrically opposed people. But the alternative isn't necessarily better.

The format of the show on Newsroom follows the other popular format. A host with a clear viewpoint and opinion on the subject matter bringing on guests to either agree totally with or to do battle with anchor vs guest. He doesn't need the "opposition moron" on the show - for Wil tells the "truth" and the opposition moron is the guest. Or (if Wil agrees with the guest) they attack an opposition moron who is not on the show to defend themselves.

Wil's show is not about the truth - it is what he believes to be true. It is about facts that people have convinced Wil are true.

#34 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 04:55 PM

Could not possibly disagree more. Relativism is the problem that "The Newsroom's" and Will's new "I'm in" commitment is out to solve.

There really is man-made climate change. BP really caused the deaths and disaster. There really is evolution. "Newsroom" is about a shift back to reality from the UN-reality of the new quantum relativism where ANYTHING may or may not be real so let's hire colorful and attractive personas to debate it for hours to sell soap.

Guess what...reality exists. There really are true things. The world is not a magic box full of Shroedinger's cats.

"The Newsroom" is committed to reality news, not quantum news. And hopefully that will be a wakeup call for America that was starting to believe that nothing's real, it's all just a matter of opinion.

That's exactly what the Corporation (and Jane Fonda) wants you to believe.

#35 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 12:10 AM

The strength and the weakness of "The Newsroom" is that it is not a news show. It's a show about producing the news that mixes a little truth with much fiction. Confusing the two is dangerous.

Virtually every piece of information being shown in "The Newsroom" - the omnipresence of the Koch Brothers money in our political system, for instance - was available through legitimate news sources in a timely manner, but it was not presented on TV news as fact in a timely manner.

That maintaining democracy has always been hard work for the governed is a fundamental truth. The less work they do, the less democracy they have. One has to search for the truth. It's not available in a timely manner delivered in rapid pace amusing sound bites delivered by hot-but-educated women and sophisticated-looking men.

"The Newsroom" isn't reflecting a possibility, it's telling an emotionally appealing fiction. I enjoy the show. But even it's on HBO, not on ad-supported broadcast TV.

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#36 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 01:06 AM

Yeah, it's a nuanced dynamic to be sure. Long ago, you could get somewhat straighter, less-censored, uncolored news on a major TV network at 6pm. Now you have to dig for it.

The problem is numbers. Only a tiny percentage of Americans watch cable news compared to network news. The ratio is staggering. Network news is still the 800lb gorilla in the room. And it's why America mostly missed the Kochs and what they're up to, and mostly missed the implications of Citizens United and more recently the LIBOR scandal. Network news run by folks like Jane Fonda in "The Newsroom" make sure you hear only what they want you to hear. To frame issues only in the frame they hang for you.

You know, I would take issue with one point: "The Newsroom" IS quite a news show. And don't think Sorkin isn't aware of the subversive nature of what he's up to. It's easy to dismiss these time-shifted stories on the show as "old news". But the issue of corporate malfeasance relative to oil spills is a current topic. The Tea Party takeover of the Republicans funded and orchestrated by the Kochs is headlines today, or should be. The refusal of SCOTUS judges to recuse themselves in blatant conflict-of-interest situations is just as hot today as back then. Citizens United, a perennial monster.

Sorkin is delivering the reality news as surely as a little boy on his bike at 6 in the morning. Most folks just don't know it yet.

#37 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 10:08 AM

You know, I would take issue with one point: "The Newsroom" IS quite a news show. And don't think Sorkin isn't aware of the subversive nature of what he's up to. It's easy to dismiss these time-shifted stories on the show as "old news". But the issue of corporate malfeasance relative to oil spills is a current topic. The Tea Party takeover of the Republicans funded and orchestrated by the Kochs is headlines today, or should be. The refusal of SCOTUS judges to recuse themselves in blatant conflict-of-interest situations is just as hot today as back then. Citizens United, a perennial monster.

Sorkin is delivering the reality news as surely as a little boy on his bike at 6 in the morning. Most folks just don't know it yet.

From a longer time perspective that is true. But the Koch direct financial ties to two SCOTUS judges regarding Citizens United needed to be a headline story done by a broadcast network reporter when the case was sent back to be reframed, not many months after the decision was handed down. People don't understand that the failure of the judges to recuse themselves should have risen to the level of a Watergate story. That fact, not the decision itself, is more worrisome IMHO as it appears a new standard of judicial ethics has simply been established without much notice.

Even Sorkin hasn't focused on that.

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#38 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 09:50 PM

+1,000 to that! And I'd feel exactly the same way if it was one of the so-called "liberal" judges. There's no place in SCOTUS for even a hint of conflict-of-interest. At even the suggestion of a possible COI, a judge needs to recuse. The phraseology in the judges' guidelines refers not to recusal on the basis of an actual COI, but merely the appearance of COI. But these judges have used the guidelines for TP. Should have been immediate calls for impeachment. Props to "The Newsroom" for at least reminding us of this core issue.

Edited by Maruuk, 27 July 2012 - 09:57 PM.


#39 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 02:22 PM

Wow, speak of the devil! A story right out of "The Newsroom", Will would have a field day with this: NBC just blacked out a moving 7/7 tribute during the opening ceremonies of the Olympics with a canned Michael Phelps puff piece. Blatant corporate censorship.

Over to you, Will...

#40 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 02:47 PM

Wow, speak of the devil! A story right out of "The Newsroom", Will would have a field day with this: NBC just blacked out a moving 7/7 tribute during the opening ceremonies of the Olympics with a canned Michael Phelps puff piece. Blatant corporate censorship.

Over to you, Will...

First of all ... last night's NBC action was NOT part of the show "The Newsroom" on HBO. Perhaps they will cover that decision in a couple of years when the show is set in 2012, probably not (unless the show changes to "The Sportsroom").

This thread is for discussion of the TV show.

#41 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 02:59 PM

See the thread NBC skips tribute piece in Olympics Opening Ceremony for access to the BBC coverage.

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#42 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 04:27 PM

Thanks for the heads up! So many threads, so little time!

#43 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 04:45 PM

Speaking of the show, from the romcom perspective, how do knockout and super-smart and sexy Olivia Munn and gorgeous Margaret Judson get to be treated as sexless old wallpaper while skanky Emily Mortimer and ditzy cheerleader Alison Pill get to be clawed after like the second coming of Megan Fox??

I mean, I like Emily as an actress, and even Alison, she's terrific. But guys are treating poor smoking-hot Olivia like she's a guy in drag or something when they should be all over her, from a real-world perspective. I hope the plot in the future allows Olivia to be "attractive" and gives her a relationship, it's the only thing in the show that is wildly improbable.

#44 OFFLINE   Laxguy

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 08:34 PM

That said, next week looks a lot more lively with actual events happening so maybe it won't be so boring, but if they keep up this machine-gun smarty-pants insider chatter only Mensa members will be able to keep track of it.


OMG, the inside flippery is hard to take. Don't think one needs to be a genius, just more au courant with inside the biz jargon....

I'm just now boarding the train, as I bailed after the first ep due to that very phenom. I thought the first ep was hard to follow for other reasons, too. Thank heavens for VOD!
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#45 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 09:30 PM

I didn't watch the first few years of The West Wing (no locals on DISH and the SD receiver didn't pick up OTA) and ended up catching up in a hurry with shows on Bravo. Sorkin's signature shows take some work to watch at times but I believe they are worth the effort.

I believe that the fact that Sorkin's Studio 60 made it one season and 30 Rock will be wrapping up in it's seventh season this fall (138 episodes) is an example of the difference between good TV and popular TV.

#46 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 12:07 PM

Yeah, I liked Studio 60!

Man, the Newsroom finale was awesome last night! The show has really found its stride. Good for intelligent TV!! I still can't figure how Sorkin gets away with such obvious Republican bashing but it works for me. (snickers into shirtsleeve)

#47 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 12:18 PM

I think Sorkin toned-down the machine-gun overlapping insider-jargon dialog a bit, I find it much easier to follow now. Can't wait for next season!

#48 OFFLINE   Sixto

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 08:00 PM

Awesome show. Just watched the finale. Love it.
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#49 OFFLINE   pablo

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 08:51 PM

Great finale. I'm just a little concerned they burned through over a year of real-world news events in these 10 episodes (from the BP spill on April 20, 2010 to August 8, 2011).




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